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Sri Lanka declared a nationwide state of emergency for 10 days on Tuesday to stop the spread of communal violence, a government spokesman said, after majority Buddhists attacked members of the minority Muslim community.

Tension has been growing between the two communities in Sri Lanka over the past year, with some hardline Buddhist groups accusing Muslims of forcing people to convert to Islam and vandalizing Buddhist archaeological sites.

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“At a special cabinet meeting, it was decided to declare a state of emergency for 10 days to prevent the spread of communal riots,” government spokesman Dayasiri Jayasekara told Reuters.

He said some people were instigating violence through Facebook and warned of tough action against them.

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